"PREFACE. PROVIDENCE having already permitted us to examine every detail connected with the supernatural origin of the Pilgrimage of Lourdes, has also enabled us to study the lives of the two principal persons chosen by our Blessed Lady as her instruments in the foundation of her work. Entirely different as were these two persons in outward particulars, there nevertheless existed a close resemblance between their characters. Both alike were gentle, and, at the same time,strong. The one, manly, heroic, and commanding, with the charity of an apostle beneath a rugged exterior, exemplified sweetness in strength. The other, feminine, delicate, and attractive in her humility and simplicity; but, notwithstanding her apparent weakness, invincible, exemplified strength in sweetness. The Cure Peyramale and Bernadette, alike in perfect harmony with the Divine plan, and inseparable from the work of Mary, together claim a place in the lasting gratitude of men. The guarding lion and the protected lamb are now no more on earth. One day, on the bright festival of our Blessed Lady's Nativity, we closed the eyes of the aged priest, and laid his mortal remains in the unfinished sanctuary, which, like another Esdras, he was building for God: on another, before the Paschal Alleluias had died away, we laid Sister Marie-Bernard in her tomb at the foot of the altar. And now it seems to us right before God, and in accordance with a very general desire, that, from personal recollections and those of others, we should record the hitherto unpublished particulars of these two lives, and thus complete the portraits of the favoured child of Lourdes, and of the Priest of the Immaculate Conception The life of Mgr. Peyramale will shortly follow this of Bernadette, now given to the public. The life of Bernadette naturally divides itself into three parts. For the account of her public life we have only to reproduce in order those portions relating to her in our former work, entitled " Our Lady of Lourdes." In spite of a certain hesitation to reprint what has already been published, we feel it necessary to do so, as otherwise her portrait would lack some of its principal features, and the unity of her life be destroyed. To show the part she fulfilled in the (written) history of our Lady of Lourdes, and the firm and unvarying character of her testimony, we have only to consult our personal recollections, and publish a few pages from our private notes. Lastly, to portray Sister Marie Bernard in her calm convent-life, we have but to repeat the accounts given to ourselves by the pious companions of this venerated Sister. More than any one else, we are conscious of the imperfections and shortcomings of our work; but whatever other merit it may lack, it at least possesses that of scrupulous accuracy, both in letter and in spirit. We have, besides, made it our duty to lay before the Congregation of the Sisters at Nevers all the portion which relates to the life of Sister Marie Bernard from the day of her entrance into religion. They alone were the witnesses of this hidden life, and, with regard to it, we have been careful only to publish a narrative corrected and verified by them, and to which they have been able to give their entire consent and approval. May the blessing of God accompany this present volume, as well as that by which it will shortly be followed. In these sad times, when an antagonistic multitude is in arms against the Christian Congregations and the Priesthood, may our Lady of Lourdes make these pages instrumental in showing those who know not, and in reminding those who forget, what a priceless pearl in the midst of her convent is the true Religious, and what a luminous diamond amid the shadows of the outer world is the true Priest of Jesus Christ. Paris, Feast of St. Bernard, August 20th, 1879,"